The Ancient Americas

The Center’s collection of about 180 artworks from ancient American cultures --- dating from 600 B.C.E. to about 1500 ---features fine examples of ceramics from the United States, particularly from the Mimbres, Anasazi, and Hopewell cultures. Also included are ceramics from Mexico (such as from the Nayarit, Veracruz, and Colima cultures), while Mesoamerican cultures are represented primarily by ceramics from the Maya, Veraguas, and Nicoya. Examples of South American arts include ceramics and metal objects from the Chancay, Nazca, and Chimú cultures of Peru.

.A selection of about 90 ancient Native American ceramic objects is currently on view in one gallery. The objects on display comprise vessels from the Mimbres and Anasazi cultures of the United States; ceramic vessels and figurines from the Casas Grandes, Colima, Jalisco, and Nayarit cultures of Mexico; and pottery from the Moche, Mochica, and Chimú cultures of Peru. A comparative selection of historic, modern, and contemporary Native American pottery demonstrates both continuity and change in Native American ceramic arts and includes 19th-century pottery from the Acoma, Cochiti, Zia, and Zuni Pueblos, as well as ceramics by the San Ildefonso Pueblo potters Maria and Julian Martinez and Lula Tapia (Lu Ann Tafoya). Learn more

Dr. Barbara Thompson
Phyllis Wattis Curator of the Arts of Africa and the Americas



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Metate in the Form of a Jaguar
600 - 700